Letter from Bishop John to clergy of the diocese

Saturday 25th August 2018

Bishop John has joined with Pope Francis in sharing his “sorrow and shame” following the Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report. He has written to all the clergy of the diocese asking them to share the letter from Pope Francis in their parishes.

Bishop John wrote:

Dear Fathers

Sadly we continue to be shocked and appalled by the reports of abuse that have taken place in America. As a priest and as bishop it has been difficult but essential that we hear the voices of those who have been hurt for so long.

Pope Francis has this week issued a letter in which he expresses his “sorrow and shame.” As bishop, I share this sorrow and shame and ask that you all read this letter and share with your parishes.

I pray for the healing of those that have been hurt and abused by the Church.

We must now think what we can do as priests.

Firstly we must try to rebuild the trust many have lost in the Church. This will not be easy. Scandals like this test the faith of our people. It is right that we speak openly of these abuses and that we come together to heal as a community.

Secondly we must look to the positive steps we have taken in our own diocese. I give thanks to all those who give their time and support to ensure parishes take all the necessary safeguarding precautions. We must never become complacent and strive to always place the protection of the young and the vulnerable at the heart of what we do.



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